A miracle is a surprising and welcome event that is not explainable by natural or scientific laws and is therefore considered to be the work of divine intervention.
The beautiful and emotionally moving music of the 1960’s silky smooth Smokey Robinson and the Miracles became expected, hard to explain its magic and seemed to emanate from divine intervention.
They were that great.
As reported by usatoday.com, “Helen Maroulis claimed the first wrestling gold for the U.S. women on Thursday in the Rio Games. And she did it by beating one of the all-time greats in the sport. The 24-year-old won in the 53 kg weight class, defeating three-time defending Olympic champion Saori Yoshida, 33, of Japan 4-1.”
Given the machine like impenetrable victorious armor of Ms. Yoshida, some considered Helen’s victory a miracle.
Another way of viewing it was, after all of the years of Helen’s training, hard work, talent and creativity, it was simply her time. Her window of opportunity briefly opened and she blasted her way through it.
It was something that Helen dreamed of her whole life.
The historical victory did not come easy. The entertaining site huffingtonpost.com details, “Maroulis, from Rockville, Maryland, also had to overcome a battle with the scale, NBC reported. She had won a world title in the 55 kilogram class but had to cut weight to compete in the 53 kilogram division in Rio. She hired a nutritionist to cope with a strict dietary regimen, but that’s over now.”
As a teen, Helen left her home in Maryland and moved to Marquette, where she finished her senior year of high school. This allowed her to train at the U.S. Olympic Education Center at Northern Michigan University.
Providing an exceptional blow by blow accounting of the match nbcolympics.com shares, “It was a gold medal showdown that the wrestling world had been looking forward to for a long time. Maroulis, the reigning world champion at 55kg, versus Yoshida, the reigning world champion at 53kg.
The first period ended with Yoshida leading 1-0 after Maroulis failed to convert when put on the 30-second shot clock. The American came out strong in the second period though, getting two takedowns to earn a 4-1 victory on points.”
At Femcompetitor Magazine we love Saori Yoshida and wrote an extensive article about her contemporary, Kaori Icho Continues To Take Names and Break Records, but given Helen’s resume, this victory is not as surprising as it might be at first glance.
It appears that espn.com agrees with us. They enlighten, “It was the sort of victory that resonates for years, the sight of a colossus in a sport suddenly going down, with all the attendant shock and amazement that comes with that. But even so, it wasn’t the Miracle on the Mat it might seem.
Freestyle wrestling matches last only six minutes. That’s it. But Maroulis had trained for this moment against Yoshida with patience in mind, and she says she’d wrestled that way in previous matches, always thinking about this potential match.”
Helen is an American freestyle wrestler who competes in the women’s 55-kg and 53-kg categories. She was a gold medalist at the 2015 World Wrestling Championships in Las Vegas, Nevada and a gold medalist at the 2011 Pan American Games in Guadalajara, Mexico.
The respected teamusa.org speaks to her incredible accomplishments:
– 2016 U.S. Olympic Team member
– 2015 World champion
– 2012 World silver medalist
– 2013 World bronze medalist
– Three-time Junior World medalist (2011 silver, 2008 & 2010 bronze)
– 2013 and 2015 World Cup champion
– 2011 Pan American Games champion
– Six-time U.S. Open champion
– Four-time WCWA women’s college national champion
When you look at those spectacular titles, at some point it was a matter of time that she would break through and find her way to the top.
Now that she has traveled and conquered the world, it seems fitting that we return to her hometown and illuminate the village that helped raise her.
It is the county seat and is a major incorporated city of Montgomery County and forms part of the Baltimore–Washington metropolitan area. The 2010 census tabulated Rockville’s population at 61,209, making it the third largest incorporated city in Maryland, behind Baltimore and Frederick.
Rockville, along with neighboring Gaithersburg and Bethesda, is at the core of the Interstate 270 Technology Corridor which is home to numerous software and biotechnology companies as well as several federal government institutions.
At the informative city site rockvillemd.gov they educated, “Rockville is one of Maryland’s oldest towns, with its origins dating back to Colonial America. During Revolutionary times Rockville was known as Hungerford’s Tavern, the name of its most familiar landmark.
Rockville has grown very rapidly from a leisurely, agriculturally-oriented county seat to a cosmopolitan city of many neighborhoods. It is home to a well-educated population and serves as an employment center for national biomed corporations, the federal government and county government.”
What about some fun things to do?
The energetic county site visitmontgomery.com smiles, “Whether you are into hiking, camping, gold, visiting galleries, or attending a performance at a theatre, you’ll find it all, and more, in Montgomery County. With more than 33,000 acres of parkland in 345 parks, 60 galleries, 22 theatres, 50 historical venues, visitors and residents enjoy superb amenities throughout the year. Take a look at some of the things to do in Montgomery County under our menu.”
What a wonderful place for Helen to grow up.
So much about achieving great accomplishments in life is not just reflective in perceived miracles or even good fortune, which let’s face it, can sometimes be a major factor, but it seems to be about something else.
When it is your time, make the most of your opportunities.
How many times does the world emotionally root for the endearing and often aging champion to hold on to their crown at the expense of the up and coming challenger?
The other side of that is, that at one time previously, what was the status of the current long time champion?
Helen clearly has a deep appreciation for the moment.
In her story printed in the Washington Times, she inspires, “This is the hardest thing I’ve ever done, mentally, physically and emotionally. At the end, I was like, ‘Really, I just did this?’ ”
Yes Helen, you really did and it wasn’t a miracle. After your years of dedication, sacrifices, hard work, well-chronicled intelligent plan and persistence……….
It was simply your time.
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OPENING PHOTO CREDIT nbcolympics-com
Sources: brainyquote.com, Wikipedia, fciwomenswrestling2.com, FCI Elite Competitor, photos thank you Wikimedia Commons.